self portrait and going to the gym experiment

I’ve started going to the gym. Yeah. I decided I would do before, during, and after drawings of my self. maybe these drawings will be the prototype of where I want to get to with putting myself into a calorie deficit and getting active.

Farther down on this post I’ve included some photographs of myself. I feel a bit self-conscious about doing so, but this part of my life, this “getting healthy” part of my life, demands that I record my self…illustrate for myself what I am doing, how I am progressing, which is made difficult by prosopagnosia and perhaps a touch of body dysmorphia…?

June 4, 2022

Each one of these pieces is 22″ x 30″, so the total height when they are added together is 88 inches, or 7 feet, 3 inches high; the figure is larger than life. I did this in recognition of my ongoing struggle to “see” myself; maybe if I make myself larger, I’ll be able to see. It does seem like a good start to this project; I don’t know where the project will go, but I will add to it as I progress in my going-to-the-gym journey. I can see that I’ve not included anything about my “gym” experiences so far. I’ll address that in my next post.

I have something called “prosopagnosia”, which means “face blindness”. I also have a very difficult time seeing what I look like. Not just my face, but also my whole body. My body got larger and larger and although I knew it had, in some ways I couldn’t tell except that my clothes had to get bigger and bigger.

bangs…I decided to give myself some bangs.

I did an assessment of my eating habits. I realized that I was lactose intolerant and that I could not tolerate eating eggs. When I looked at how I might improve my eating habits, I realized that eating a plant-based diet might be a good way to go. So that’s what I did. But then I missed seafood, so I added prawns and salmon back into my diet, which means I don’t need to take an omega-3 supplement.

I lost 40 pounds between July 1 and January 1.

I’d like to lose another 20 pounds, but the last 20 will be harder. When I look at this most recent photograph below, I can see that my upper body has benefitted from the weight loss. Visually. But I also keep track of my bodily measurements, and I know that in terms of inches, I’ve lost inches proportionately at my chest, waist, hips, upper thighs, and lower thighs.

But really, to express how difficult it is for me to see myself, I don’t really see a huge difference between the photograph that follows and the one that comes before. Except my shoulders looks skinnier,

dismantling a Barbie tree

A few years ago I made a Barbie tree from a basic wire structure. I added some dolls that I had partially painted with green and orange paint, and who had pieces of broken mirror glued to their body parts. I think this may have been my attempt to deal with body dysmorphia. I’m not sure if I actually have body dysmorphia, but I have a limited ability to know what I look like, probably related to something I know I “have”, which is prosopagnosia, the inability to recognize others by their facial features…unless I know them really well. Even then, if someone I know really well dyes their hair, or shows up where I’ve never seen them before, I just might not recognize them until I hear their voice.

Anyway, a few years ago I made a Barbie tree, and it has been sitting on a high shelf in my apartment, gathering dust. I never look at it. In fact, it scares me a bit, with all its broken mirror bits.

Also, I find that people who see this tend to feel sorry for me; but I just find this funny, so maybe there is something off about my sense of humour. Well, I don’t really care, but I don’t need to keep this any more.

And I really don’t like Barbie dolls. As you can see.

Today I decided to dismantle it. I did this in the kitchen, as you can also see.

I also decided to record the dismantling, and put it here, because really this is my only diary to speak of, and I guess I’ll continue to keep this diary until…I can no longer write or do art or take photographs.

I think she might be a Disney princess.
She looks pretty good on this little stand, so I’ll keep her for now. Also, I like that her lower right leg is made from a mirror shard.
She has the best face, so I’ve decided to keep her. And hair. I’d love to have hair like that.

Even if I cut myself a fringe, I still wouldn’t look like her.

can they be recycled?
I’ve decided to keep the stand because it can be repurposed.